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Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Nancy Walkup
Molas are from the San Blas Islands north of Panama
San Blas Island women use them as part of their blouses. The front and the
back are the same. Each takes about 40 hours to...
The San Blas Islands are located north of Panama.
The San Blas Islands
Many designs are based on island life.
Backgrounds are usually completely filled with designs.
Many designs are symmetrical.
Fold a 9”x12” paper
in half. Draw a
simple outline of an
animal as large as
possible on the
folded paper. Cut
out with the...
Glue the two
pieces side by side
on another color
9”x12” paper. They
should not touch
each other or the
sides of the paper.
With a pencil,
draw a contour
line around each
creature about ¼
inch away. Cut
out both pieces.
Repeat process
on two more...
Glue the final
cutouts to a 12”x18”
inch black paper. Fill
in the background
and the creatures
with patterns and
designs.
Lesson adapted from Davis Publications’
Explorations in Art, an elementary curriculum.
Written by Nancy Walkup
nancywalkup...
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
Molas: A Cloth Tradition
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Molas: A Cloth Tradition

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Details the history of molas, fabric appliqués from the San Blas Islands north of Panama and share elementary art lesson to make paper molas.

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Molas: A Cloth Tradition

  1. 1. Molas: A Cloth Tradition Nancy Walkup
  2. 2. Molas are from the San Blas Islands north of Panama
  3. 3. San Blas Island women use them as part of their blouses. The front and the back are the same. Each takes about 40 hours to make.
  4. 4. The San Blas Islands are located north of Panama.
  5. 5. The San Blas Islands
  6. 6. Many designs are based on island life.
  7. 7. Backgrounds are usually completely filled with designs.
  8. 8. Many designs are symmetrical.
  9. 9. Fold a 9”x12” paper in half. Draw a simple outline of an animal as large as possible on the folded paper. Cut out with the paper folded.
  10. 10. Glue the two pieces side by side on another color 9”x12” paper. They should not touch each other or the sides of the paper.
  11. 11. With a pencil, draw a contour line around each creature about ¼ inch away. Cut out both pieces. Repeat process on two more colors.
  12. 12. Glue the final cutouts to a 12”x18” inch black paper. Fill in the background and the creatures with patterns and designs.
  13. 13. Lesson adapted from Davis Publications’ Explorations in Art, an elementary curriculum. Written by Nancy Walkup nancywalkup@mac.com

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